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Subaru rumoured WRC return likely to spawn new hot hatch

Could Subaru be on the cusp of a return to the WRC?

Subaru is rumoured to be working on an all-new hot hatch as the Japanese brand eyes a return to the World Rally Championship after 10 years out of the series.

The rumours are swirling in Japan, with local publication Response reporting a "scoop" that Subaru is looking to counter its dropping awareness in Europe with a return to the main rally stage in 2020.

In order to do that, though, it would need wheels to enter, and that would mean a new Toyota Yaris GRM-sized hot hatch that could be transformed into a rally car.

The site points to the brand's Subaru Viziv Performance Concept, revealed at the Tokyo Motor Show in 2017, as the inspiration for a new Fiesta ST-rivalling hot hatch. That car, though, was actually bigger than the WRX (measuring 4630mm long, 1950mm wide and 1430mm tall).

There's been plenty of encouragement for Subaru, once a force in rallying, to return to the WRC. Toyota boss Akio Toyoda has reportedly been privately urging his fellow Japanese manufacturer to make a return to racing, while Japanese websites are reporting that Subaru's own bosses consider a return to rally the quickest way to put the brand back on the European map.

One fairly sizeable caveat, though; this is mere whisper and rumour at this point, so there's no guarantees. But we can hope, right?

Is it time for Subaru to return to the WRC? Tell us in the comments below.